CRICKET - Birmingham Bears beat rivals Rapids to move top of T20 Blast North Group - The Leamington Observer

CRICKET - Birmingham Bears beat rivals Rapids to move top of T20 Blast North Group

Aaron Sutcliffe 24th Jun, 2024 Updated: 25th Jun, 2024   0

BIRMINGHAM Bears moved top of the T20 Blast North Group standings with a five-wicket win against rivals Worcestershire Rapids.

The Bears recovered from 7-3 at the start of their reply, after restricting the Rapids to 155-7, as Sam Hain and Jacob Bethell both hit half-centuries to guide the Bears to victory at New Road.

And the result means Birmingham now top the T20 Blast North Group standings after securing a fourth successive win.

Bears bowler Michael Booth (1-11) removed Rapids opener Kashif Ali (8) with his second ball as the latter attempted to emulate the six he struck off the former’s first delivery.

And Jake Lintott then took a superb one-handed catch at mid-off to dismiss Josh Cobb (13) off the bowling of Craig Miles (1-24) before Ed Pollock (21) lofted Dan Mousley (1-28) into the hands of mid on in the final over of the powerplay.

Danny Briggs (2-22) left his mark on the game after bowling Gareth Roderick (20) with a full delivery before he also removed Adam Hose (17) who departed to an excellent catch low down on the long on boundary.

Former Bear Ethan Brookes (13) fell in the same area off Bethell (1-19) while Lintott (1-27) accounted for Nathan Smith (8) as Rob Jones (26 not out) and Tom Taylor (21 not out) lifted the Rapids to 155-7.

The Bears lost three early wickets in reply as Smith (2-24) struck twice in two balls in the first over to remove Ed Barnard (0) and Mousley (0) for ducks.

And Worcestershire struck again the following over when Hayden Walsh held on to a low catch as Taylor (3-36) claimed the wicket of Alex Davies (4).

However, Hain (76) and Bethell (71 not out) starred with the bat, putting on 148 runs for the Bears fourth-wicket to put Birmingham on the brink of victory.

Needing just a single run to claim the local bragging rights, Taylor eventually brought an end to Hain’s 53-ball innings before then bowling Chris Benjamin (0) the following ball.

However, George Garton (4 not out) eventually sealed the win for the Bears in the 18th over.

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